Since the Fog Blog is dedicated to finding the answers to hard questions, we thought an investigation into some of the newest market claims in the vaping world was imminent. Tackling the difficult questions takes patience and resources on the inside. We have little to none of those things, yet we have a dedication toward the truth. So let's dive into the newest trend in the vaping community and see if what truth is out there...
These days making health-conscious purchases are a becoming a must. Avoiding the fast food and looking for a healthy alternative is important for today's consumer. Even McDonalds is looking to offer kale shakes to customers.
As the winds of change take over, the vape community is out to offer it's healthiest options. The organic vape juice is the next big thing and one starts to wonder about the details. I'm as curious as you are, so let's discuss what it takes to make an organic e-liquid.
What are the standards for organic e-juice?
The “organic” label for e-juice is required to meet the same standards as other organic substances, such as food fall under similar scrutiny. In the United States, for instance, organic products must meet certain USDA standards including:
Products must be grown using certain natural methods
They have to be produced using allowed substances.
Must be regulated under supervision from the FDA
Is organic e-juice worth the cost?
Though there haven't been any related clinical studies to go with the rise in E-liquid use, it's the idea that some would rather be safe than sorry. The idea is based around taking the safe route when it comes to vaping, but the jury is still out on whether it makes a difference or not.
The cost for the consumer and for obtaining the necessary certifications, lab inspections, and all the other necessary steps are a major downside. The decision to go organic at this point is up to the vaper themselves. There are many critics of organic products, but no one is telling them they have to make that purchase either, though many of us would prefer if all products were treated with this same level of scrutiny, which in turn would hopefully drive down cost as organic became the market standard.
As vaping becomes more and more popular, we’ll see different enticing marketing strategies to make the pool of vapers out there want to buy a specific kind of e-juice.
For something to be considered organic, it cannot use chemical pesticides as well as be approved by the USDA organic standards.
Before a restaurant or grocery store can even advertise organic produce being sold, the product needs to be certified by the USDA National Organic Program too. Let’s break down what it would take for an e-juice to be made under organic circumstances, ingredient by ingredient.
PG, as it is often referenced in the vape community or Propylene Glycol is used as part of the base for the e-juice.
PG is typically known for its deeper throat hit as well as binding well with flavors of the e-liquid. PG is also a synthetic compound. That is you won’t be finding this is your local farms as it is created in a lab and There arenot certified by the USDA as organic by any means.
Compounds like ethyl alcohol, or more commonly known as ethanol, has many of the same properties as propylene glycol, and it can be rated as an organic compound, but it is dangerous to your health if used in high concentrations.
VG or Vegetable Glycerin can be organic, certainly. VG is derived from vegetables, and as long as they are organically grown, there is no reason why VG cannot be an organic substance. Some e-liquids contain only vegetable glycerin and these are the ones that could be created to be certified organic.
Most glycerin on the market today are conventionally produced as a byproduct of industrial processing from biodiesel manufacturing and soap industries.
All natural vegetable glycerin is produced from plants grown without the use of pesticides and extracted without the use of chemicals. Using a process called hydrolysis, plant oils are placed under the combined force of pressure, temperature, and water. The chemical bond breaks down and causes the glycerin to split from fatty acids and be absorbed by water; at which point the result is further isolated by distillation to increase purity. That's you 'How It's Made' for today!
Last but not least there is the nicotine. Nicotine was actually used as one of the more natural pesticides out there and derived from tobacco leaves. For some reason, it is not on the approved list of pesticides that can be used for something to be considered organic. Although nicotine may be natural and organic in nature, nicotine is not considered to be an organic product in the eyes of the USDA.
Most nicotine used in e-liquids can be from “naturally handpicked tobacco” but what was applied to it during its growth will be harder to deem organic. According to a recent study, 90% of all tobacco is grown in conjunction with pesticides. That's not to say that pesticides cannot be organic in nature.
So for an e-liquid to be completely organic, they have to be nicotine free and use only vegetable glycerin as its base or under intense scrutiny from the board of organic experts, from the USDA to the FDA.
Cold Purified Extracted Nicotine?
The nicotine that many will consider being organic comes from domestically grown and harvested USA tobacco crops.
These crops are ethically grown and raised by the tobacco farmer without the use of pesticides, growth control agents and or herbicides resulting in a very pure and natural tobacco. The leaves are then harvested and prepared for the nicotine extraction process.
In this progress, the botanical matter is then manipulated with a technique call Supercritical Fluid Extraction or (SFE).
This extraction process is completely free of chemicals/ solvents and uses a Cold/Closed refinement technology to shield from heat, light, and oxygen. This kind of processed nicotine has an extended shelf life due to the absence of destabilizing impurities while providing a consistently rich full-flavor profile.
To sum up the class an e-liquid as totally organic it needs to adhere to the following rules:
Typically VG Base, as PG cannot be made organically
Nicotine derived from an organic source, (such as eggplant or pesticide free tobacco)
Made with 100% natural organic flavorings.
Hopefully, the mystery has been unraveled for now. Yes, it is possible for organic e-liquid to be made, but it requires scrutiny from the FDA, USDA and the proper organic materials which can be difficult to obtain and process correctly. We hope you've found this deep dive into the subject matter of organic e-liquid informative. For more deep dive sleuthing, check out the rest of the Fog Blog.